As Silent as the Grave

With Halloween fast approaching, I thought it as good a time as any to talk about ghosts. Not the supernatural kind but the ghosts that are the bane of a recruiter’s life. The candidates who engage with the recruiter, are put forward for roles, secure and perhaps even attend an interview and then disappear without so much as a word. As silent as the grave …

A Breach of Trust

Recruitment depends upon there being a large element of trust between the recruiter and the candidate. The recruiter is only as good as the information provided by the candidate and any recruiter must rely on the candidate to be open, honest and to give full disclosure of matters pertinent to a job application.

It is vital to the success of the recruiter-candidate relationship that each side communicates freely with the other. A good recruiter needs to get to know a candidate well to be able to represent him or her effectively and to find the right opportunity. Anything less and the recruiter would be failing in his duties.

For most readers, it should go without saying that dropping an agent who has made efforts on your behalf without a word would be both discourteous and unacceptable. And yet, sadly, such ghosting is far from a rare event. We encounter it all too frequently and, perhaps unsurprisingly, it does seem to be more prevalent amongst younger candidates. It may just be a lack of maturity on their part, but it is vital that candidates understand that such behaviour shows them in an extremely poor light, not only in the eyes of recruiters but also in the eyes of potential employers.

A Short-sighted Approach

Communicating with your recruitment agent is not merely a matter of good manners, but is essential for your agent to be able to represent you effectively. If you no longer wish to be represented by that agent, for whatever reason, then that is perfectly fine. But simply to vanish without a word is not.

Candidates must remember the efforts that have been made behind the scenes on their behalf to help them secure an interview and, with any luck, a job offer. Time and effort will have been invested by the agent and, at the very least, that demands the courtesy of a continuing dialogue.

Given the ease of communication these days, there is no excuse whatsoever to ghost a recruitment agent and to do so is extremely short-sighted. Why give yourself a poor reputation in the eyes of someone who may be extremely well-connected in the industry in which you work? Recruiters’ networks can be far-reaching and that agent may never entertain an application from you again.

What We Ask

Recruitment can be a thankless and frustrating job at times, but nothing irritates more than to be ghosted after working hard to help a candidate secure an interview or a role. It should not be necessary to remind candidates of what is expected on their part, but sadly, in some cases, it is.

Keep your agent informed of your circumstances and, if you feel a role or a firm is not the right fit for you, give reasons why. This helps your agent to better understand your ideal role or employer. If you are attending other interviews or considering other job offers, let your agent know. When the times come for it, part on good terms with your agent. You may need recruitment assistance again in the future, possibly sooner than you think.

Above all, never simply disappear without a word.

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